Why Does My Poop Smell Like Cow Manure? [ANSWERED]

Your poop smells like cow manure or dung because you have been consuming a lot of dairy products lately.

Lactase refers to an enzyme that breaks down lactose, which is a sugar contained in milk. Humans who cannot produce enough lactase experience a condition known as lactose intolerance, and their bodies are unable to break down whatever lactose it consumes.

Because of this, their body system ferments and works its way through their digestive tract. This then results in a really smelly poop with stanch-like cow manure.

Now, here’s a shocker – a lot of people who are lactose intolerant are still able to tolerate a certain amount of dairy before it becomes a problem.

For instance, a cup of yogurt might be okay, but drinking a whole gallon at once might be disastrous. If you drink or eat too much dairy or its byproducts in one sitting, your body might fail to process all of the lactase, and more of it will end up passing through your system without being broken down into digestible sugars.

What to do If My Poop Smells Like Cow Manure?

Digestion and poor diet can cause foul-smelling stools and your stool to smell like cow shit. The smell you perceive now could also be a symptom of an underlying disease.

If your stool is foul-smelling or greasy, the first thing to do is to check for lactose intolerance. This is because it may show an inability to digest milk products properly.

A stool that stinks of manure may also show a malabsorption syndrome, like celiac disease or Crohn’s disease.

If you feel your stools have a very strong foul smell, speak to your doctor immediately. He or she will probably be able to run some tests to determine the cause of the problem before giving advice on how best to treat it.

Foul-smelling stools are not necessarily a cause for concern, especially if you have been consuming a lot of dairy products or fatty foods recently. But it is always best to ensure that you do not already have an underlying medical condition that could cause the problem.

What does the Smell of Your Poop Tell You?

The smell of your poop could mean:

  • Your bathroom is stinky
  • Bad hygiene
  • Bad diet
  • Gastrointestinal problems or
  • Even colon cancer

Here are seven common causes of smelly poop:

  • You consume foods with certain odors

A lot of people who consume foods with strong odors like onions, garlic, and some spices – may observe that their stools smell bad.

While this may not originally be a cause for concern, it can be repulsive for you and anyone who perceives the stank shit!

  • You are lactose intolerant

Lactose is natural sugar contained in dairy products such as cheese and milk. For humans that are lactose intolerant, their bodies do not produce enough of the enzyme lactase to break it down properly in the small intestine.

Because of this, undigested lactose passes into the large intestine, where bacteria break it down and produce hydrogen sulfide (the rotten egg smell), methane (which smells similar to flatulence), and short-chain fatty acids (which make stool very acidic). That combination makes for some seriously pungent poop.

  • You have been having meal very high in sulfur-rich foods like Brussels sprouts, cabbage, or eggs

Cut back on diets containing high levels of sulfur.

Foods like eggs, cabbage, and Brussel sprouts are common culprits. Since sulfur is odorless and tasteless, you might not realize your diet is changing until the smellier-than-average poop hits.

  • Gluten intolerance

Gluten intolerance could make your poop smell too. If you consume plenty of bread and observe smelly poop, then it could mean you’re having issues digesting the gluten in wheat, which can also cause gas.

If your poop smells bad after you consume bread, it could be celiac disease.

  • Intestinal infection

An infection in the intestinal lining could trigger inflammation, which is then followed by stomach cramps and diarrhea.

Infections can also change the way food is absorbed in the intestines, affecting how it smells when expelled.

ALSO SEE: Why Does My Poop Smell Like Moth Balls?

Why do Horses’ and Cows’ Poops Smell So Bad? Is it because they only eat Grass?

Cows are large animals that chew the cud which digests grass better so their poo is yucky poo and smelly. Being a large animal means larger poop, and they stink a wider area.

On the contrary, Horse poo smells quite sweet and grassy because the grass is hard to digest.


Lactose intolerance or an underlying medical condition could explain why your poop smells like cow manure.

Lactose intolerance refers to the lack of ability to digest a certain amount of sugar found in dairy products, which can result in gas, bloating, and really stinky poop.

The seriousness of your symptoms can differ based on how much lactose you take in. The undigested lactose ferment in your intestine causes your poop to smell like cow manure.

If you must eat dairy products at all, having small amounts or Lactose-free versions of your favorite foods can help prevent symptoms in the future.

Other reasons for why your poop smells bad are:

  • Food poisoning,
  • Dehydration,
  • Infection,
  • or a side-effect from medication.

If you’re experiencing other symptoms like fever, diarrhea, or weight loss, see a doctor.

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